10 January 2010

Swedish Christmas Dinner

Finally! Internet is back, and so am I. Here's what I served a group of friends for Christmas dinner. I will explain what is in the picture and post the recipes below for anything that I actually made.

Starting at the "9 o'clock" position, we have:

  • Aged 2-year old English sharp cheddar cheese
  • Smoked salmon
  • Marinated herring - Abba's is the most famous Swedish maker. Available at IKEA.
  • Swedish limpa bread (recipe below)
  • Swedish meatballs (recipe has been posted previously)
  • Stewed kale (recipe below)
  • Prinskorv ("prince sausage") - found this at IKEA!
  • Jansson's Frestelse ("Jansson's Temptation") (recipe below)
  • Hard boiled egg - recipe below. Just kidding.
The dinner was served with a variety of beverages: red and white wines, glögg, and one of the more important parts of a true Swedish Christmas dinner: akvavit! Before drinking the shot, one has to sing a song in Swedish. Since I know most of my readers are not fluent in the language, here are the lyrics "in English" (basically, someone put English words to the song, to sound like it's in Swedish).

In addition, we made some Christmas-inspired cocktails, one of which is pictured above.

And now, the recipes.

Peppermint "Martini"

3 oz vodka
2 oz white creme de menthe
2 oz white creme de cacao
small candy cane

I hate calling anything that contains anything other than gin and vermouth a "martini," but I guess I have to get with the times. Place all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake, pour into a cocktail glass, garnish with a candy cane, enjoy.

Swedish Limpa bread

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 tbsp shortening or butter
1 tbsp salt
2 tsp caraway seeds
1/2 tsp anise seed
1 1/2 cups hot water
4 1/2 cups AP flour
2 cups rye flour

Place 1/4 cup warm water and yeast in a bowl. Stir to combine and leave for 5 to 10 minutes, until frothy. In the meantime, combine brown sugar, molasses, shortening/butter, salt, caraway seed and anise seed in a large bowl. Pour the hot water over the ingredients in the bowl, stir and set aside until lukewarm (about 5 minutes).

Add a cup of flour to the sugar mixture and beat until smooth. Add the yeast mixture and mix well. Add the rye flour and up to 3 1/2 cups AP flour (which is what remains), but not more than required to make a soft, slightly tacky (but not sticky) dough. You can do this by hand or in a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and let rest for 10 minutes. Knead until soft and tacky, then form into a ball and place in a large, oiled bowl. Turn to coat. Cover with waxed paper and a towel and let stand in a warm place until doubled (about 2 hours).

Punch the dough down, then pull the edges into the center and turn dough completely over in the bowl. Cover and let rise again until nearly doubled. Punch down again, then turn out onto a floured work surface.

Grease a baking sheet. Divide the dough into two portions and shape into balls. Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Place on the baking sheet, then cover and let rise until nearly doubled. Turn the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly brown. Cool on wire rack before carving.

Stewed Kale

1 bunch kale
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
black pepper

Fill a large pot about halfway with water and add about 1 tbsp salt. Bring to a boil. Clean the kale and remove the leaves from the stems. Discard the stems. Blanche the kale in the water for about 1 minute. Drain and let cool. Once cool enough to handle, slice into smaller pieces.

In a medium pot, melt the butter. Add the kale and cook for about a minute. Add the cream, about a teaspoon of salt and some black pepper. Cook over medium heat for about three minutes, stirring regularly. Serve immediately.

Jansson's Frestelse

3-4 large potatoes
1 medium onion
200 g anchovies
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
3 tbsp bread crumbs
2 tbsp butter

Turn the oven to 425 degrees F. Peel the potatoes and onion and cut into thin strips. Grease a 9" dish. Place a layer of potatoes in the pan, then a layer of onion, then finally anchovies. End with a layer of potatoes. Once finished, pour the liquid from the anchovies containers and the cream into the dish. Sprinkle the bread crumbs on top and bake in the oven for one hour, or until the potatoes are soft.

Hard Boiled Eggs

I said I was just kidding. All right, fine: put eggs in pot. Cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, remove from heat and cover. Leave covered for 15 minutes. Rinse in cold water, peel, eat, enjoy, yada yada yada.

1 comment:

  1. Äntligen är du tillbaka!! Men ååå så himla fint det ser ut, hoppas verkligen att jag får äta DIN julmat nästa år i Austin!! Kram mamma